Democratic Left – We can grasp the dynamics of contemporary global capitalism through the prism of Foxconn. Nearly a million young Chinese workers assemble over 50 percent of all the electronics products consumed on the globe at 30 of its factories in China. In those massive production complexes armies of young men and women perform monotonous repetitive assembly tasks under quasimilitary discipline 60 hours a week for minimal pay.
Foxconn, controlled by Taiwanese billionaire Terry Gou, is China’s largest exporter and 60th largest global corporation with annual revenues of $79 billion (2010). Its largest corporate customer is Apple, whose iPhones and iPads it manufactures, but most other major global electronics companies also contract [...]
Hong Kong, 16 October 2012
The PR stunts by Foxconn are impaired by the riot in Taiyuan and the strike in Zhengzhou. The abusive [...]
Whenever there are new products launched by Apple, consumers are thrilled. All over the world they queue up outside Apple stores in order to have their beloved products immediately. At the same time, workers are queuing up for the company bus and lining up to swipe their staff card at Foxconn, but without similar excitement. When the peak season comes, they are tied to the production lines with just 1 day off in 13 working days, or no rest day at all in a month, all to cope with the public demand for the new Apple products. It is sad to say that to some extent, workers also yearn for the peak season because their base pay is insufficient to meet their basic needs, especially for those who have to [...]